Friday, October 11, 2013

What We're Eating: Fall Hits and Misses

Andi's been working crazy long hours and my belly is full of baby boy (meaning, I'm getting to that point in pregnancy where I'm just not hungry), so I haven't been in the mood to cook much these days. But when I have been in the kitchen, I've embraced cozy fall meals with some hits and misses. Here's what we've eating these days:

Slow Cooker Chicken Pot Pie Stew
I ... didn't like this recipe much. It was easy to throw together and I had most of the ingredients on hand already, so those kind of recipes always earn points in my book. However as stated, the stew ended up being very salty (and I even left out the chicken bouillon, adding half chicken broth / half water instead). It was a bit of vegetable overload as well with the fresh celery, carrots AND the frozen mixed vegetables together. Definitely edible, but I wouldn't crave to make it again. Rating: C

Stove-Top Chili
Though this recipe could've been made in a slow cooker, I made it one Sunday afternoon on the stove in a Dutch oven. Easy to make; most of the ingredients I had on hand and I thought it was flavorful. Leftovers were great, too. If you don't like spicy chili (though I'm a bit of wimp when it comes to ranking 'spicy,' so take this with a grain of salt), cut back on the amount of chili powder. I made the recipe as directed and it had a bit of a kick. Rating: A

Crock-Pot Oatmeal
I made this recipe one weekend at the cabin and I'm not sure what happened but ... it did not turn out. Like, burnt into the bottom of the cooker and completely inedible. Bummer. I followed the recipe directions as stated. Luckily, my lovely husband swung into action and made Tory and I waffles for breakfast instead. Rating: F

Turkey Chili with Apples
Apparently all I seem to be hungry for lately is chili. I think it's because Andi's been working quite a bit and it makes great leftovers. I tried this turkey chili recipes and, whoa, it was HOT. Spicy hot, like choke and spit out the bite hot. I mostly followed the directions, except I actually cut back on the amount of chipolte peppers in adobo sauce called for in the recipe. Also, I think ground turkey has a weird texture. I know it's healthier and that's why I always want to make recipes that call for it, but it's never as good as I hope it to be. The crunchy apples were a nice touch. Rating: B (if you cut waaay back on the spice factor).

Turkey Mini Meatloaves
Again with the turkey alternative to ground beef ... these mini meatloves were easy to toss together and were actually delicious. Tory, Andi and I all gobbled them up. *Note the recipe only makes about 2-3 adult servings. Rating: A

Smothered Chicken with Spinach and Mushrooms
This recipe was super yummy and easy to make, too. Over dinner Andi said to me, "This kinda looked gross when you were making it, but it actually tastes really good." Um, thanks? Rating: A

Pumpkin Muffins with Streusel Topping
I think I mentioned these muffins in another blog post about cooking with Tory, but I'd recommend this recipe. In fact, the muffins lasted about three days at our house; Tory just ate them right up. Maybe not the healthiest of muffin recipes, but they were moist and flavorful without being over the top. Rating: A

Carrot Oatmeal Muffins
On the other hand, these muffins were too dense and almost sticky-like. They contained a lot of fruits and veggies, but not really worth it when I couldn't get Tory to eat them. Rating: C

Pumpkin Cinnamon Applesauce
One of the items on my fall bucket list was to make homemade applesauce with Tory. I chose this recipe to use up some of the pureed pumpkin I bought for other recipes. This particular one wasn't a slow cooker recipe; I made it on the stove top and it was fairly simple to throw together. The applesauce turned out very, very sweet though and Tory didn't seem to care for it. I thought it was okay. Rating: C

Any other tasty fall recipes out there I should try?


  1. I've been on a chili kick too lately! I might try that turkey apple chili recipe. I actually really like ground turkey as opposed to beef and often substitute it in my regular chili.
    I'm posting a couple really great pork crockpot recipes tomorrow. They are super easy to prepare, and may even work as a frozen meal, so they may be worth a try for those early postpartum days!

  2. Don't write off Crock Pot oatmeal completely! This recipe is SOOO tasty and somehow very flavorful without a lot of added sugar:

    Three things to note though:
    1) I use almond milk to give it a bit more flavor
    2) You must, must, MUST spray the crock pot with Pam (or some other cooking spray) before you put the ingredients in (perhaps this is why your burned to the bottom and sides???)
    3) It's important to use ONLY steel cut oats - I tried the Old Fashioned and ended up with mush (again, maybe why the other recipe didn't work??)

    I hope you try it - you won't be disappointed! It's one of my favorite fall/winter comfort foods.

  3. I came across that recipe for turkey chili with apples and was curious about it. Glad you tried it so now I know how to adjust it!